If you haven’t heard, Sweeney’s has a new home!  The office, yard and warehouse all moved to Villa Park in an effort to be more efficient, secured, and unified, so we can better serve our customers.    We are now located at 100 S. Villa Avenue, Suite 1A.  There is still some work to be done as we settle in, but feel free to stop by and say hello!

Summer, as we all know, is on the down swing, and August will come lumbering in on Friday, groggy, slow, and ill-tempered.  Historically speaking, August has been known to host the dreaded “dog days” where the crushing humidity leaves you groggy, slow, and ill-tempered, but this summer has its own, unique agenda, and I will not complain.  It’s been fairly pleasant, but something tells me August has a trick up its sleeve, and will make its presence known and unforgettable.  At least, I keep thinking, we’re that much closer to glorious, splendid Fall.

As we enter the final laps of summer and enjoy some of the last of its blooms, it is important we continue to deadhead.  Deadheading is the process in which spent and faded flowers are removed.  Some people refer to this process as “pinching”.  This isn’t just for aesthetic purposes.  Removing spent blooms can encourage more blooms, improve the health of foliage, can prevent nuisance reseeding all while causing the plant to become bushier and more compact.  Even in the case of plants that will not continue to bloom or re-bloom, deadheading helps direct energy toward the root system.  Additionally, if you don’t want more of a particular perennial, deadhead after their peak bloom.  This will help prevent reseeding.  Even flowering shrubs benefit from deadheading, but not everything should be deadheaded.  Plants that bear decorative berries, seed heads or pods should be left until later in the season, if at all.

So, how does one go about deadheading?  Simple.  Really.  For perennials with flowers at the tips of the stems, cut just below the faded flower.  For plants with leafy flower stems and leaves at the base of the plant, cut back to just above the topmost, unopened bud.  For perennials with bare stems, cut off close to the ground.  If you’re simply not sure, give us a call.  We’ll make sure you become a skilled and prolific deadheader.

“Shed no tear!  O Shed no tear!

The flower will bloom another year.

Weep no more!  O weep no more!

Young buds sleep in the root’s white core.”

-John Keats

Best wishes,

Kim Sweeney